What power & authority did a Queen have in ancient Israel?


During the time of the Kings of ancient Israel, we hear only a little in the Bible about the Queen, who was the mother of the king. Usually, it is only to mention her name. (see 2 Chronicles)

I know some of the things a Queen could do but I have not been able to find an authentic source that lists or enumerates her powers. Most of what I have gleaned comes from hysterical(oops, sorry) historical novels so it could be inaccurate.

As I understand it, a Queen did not just carry petitions to the King. In addition to her influence over the King, she was granted power, in her own right, to hear and answer petitions, resolve disputes and grant favors without ever consulting the kIng on the matter.

Does anyone here know more?


I don’t know what the powers were, but it was real authority. Even God acknowledged the queens authority through Jeremiah:

There are other places in the Old Testament that show the queen mother in ancient Israel had real power. Jeremiah is speaking for the Lord in chapter 13:18-20, “Say to the king and to the queen mother: come down from your throne; From your heads fall your magnificent crowns.The cities of the Negeb are besieged, with no one to relieve them; All Judah is banished in universal exile. Lift up your eyes and see men coming from the north. Where is the flock entrusted to you, the sheep that were your glory?” Also in 2nd Kings, the King of Babylon is fixing to route Jerusalem. “Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, himself arrived at the city while his servants were besieging it. Then Jehoiachin, king of Judah, together with his mother, his ministers, officers, and functionaries, surrendered to the king of Babylon… (2nd Kings 24, 11-12).


You can also read of King Asa deposing his mother Maacah from her position, a clear indication that Queen Mother was actually an office from which one could be removed and not just a mere hereditary title.


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